What is the primary purposee of the claws on a
cicada? Is it for the nymph to bore her way to the surface of the soil
after the long hibernation, or is it to help her climb up a tree trunk,
etc? Is there a primary purpose?
The adult cicada has only one purpose. Mate. No food is eaten and life as
an adult is very short. The "claws" (as you have labeled them) serve many
purposes, and some you mentioned, but grasping for mating is another. The
female has to have a firm hold on a tree branch to layer her eggs when she
cuts into the branch.
You should be able to find this information in an encyclopedia.
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Update: June 2012